Digital cameras get a lot of use. But with heavy use comes a greater likelihood that your camera will be damaged, lost or - if you’re travelling - even stolen.
To assure a long life for your digital camera, take these precautions against mishap and misfortune.
- Get insurance
Camera insurance policies don’t have to be expensive. The premium – as with home, car or other kinds of insurance – will vary depending upon the value of the equipment you’re insuring.
Your best insurance policies, in fact, may come from the same company that insures your home or car. Make sure you get a no-fault policy that covers damage due to accidents as well as loss due to theft.
- Keep lenses clean
Your camera or camera lens probably came with a lens cap. Use it.
To deal with the dust or smudges that will inevitably find their way to your camera’s lens – regardless of lens cap – you can take a number of approaches.
One method is to use a clean, soft brush, such as an artist’s brush, to remove simple dust.
To remove smudges, use a lens cleaning cloth and solution, which you’ll find at any photographic store. There are some specialty lens cleaning products as well that are worth looking into.
- Sensor care
Those dust particles show up on digital images as dark spots, potentially marring images or making them a chore to clean up in photo software afterwards.
To address the dust issue, you have to do one of two things: periodically clean the dust off the sensor yourself or send the camera to the manufacturer’s service centre to have the cleaning done professionally.
If you’re a DSLR user, you should buy a bulb blower, which is basically a hand-holdable rubber bulb that you squeeze to expel bursts of air directed at your sensor. You can find these at any photographic store or online.
If you have a compact digital camera or one of the newer DSLRs with automatic sensor cleaning, you’re in luck. You probably won’t have to worry about dust – or cleaning it.
- Keeping it covered
Still, even with weather sealing – often available only on higher-end DSLRs – temperature extremes, especially cold weather, can cause cameras to malfunction.
The solution: a protective bag or pouch for your camera when it’s not in use. Consider a belt pack for adequate protection and maximum mobility while retaining easy access.